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5 tips for setting New Year’s fitness goals rather than resolutions

Watch above: Tristan and Jessica Zapata from Infinite Fitness talk about setting fitness goals rather than resolutions.

EDMONTON — It’s that time of year again: the time when people trade the Christmas turkey and holiday baking for running shoes and dumbbells.

While many people will make getting fit or losing weight their New Year’s resolution, a couple of local personal trainers suggest people make fitness goals rather than resolutions. Jessica Zapata and Tristan Zapata from Edmonton’s Infinite Fitness offer the following five tips for setting and keeping realistic fitness goals.

Keep your fitness regimen going through the holidays

Jessica says the key to keeping fit through the holidays is to keep moving.

“That’s one of the big things that we advocate is, ‘Yes, you’re going to all these parties and you’re eating more, but you need to still move.'”

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“Don’t just take a break from everything, even if you have to cut down your frequency,” she said. “If you’re going to the gym three times a week, maybe you’re going to get in one workout a week. But it’s better than nothing.”

READ MORE: How to stay fit and healthy during the holidays

Make fitness a priority

Don’t sit and ponder whether or not you’re going to exercise, Jessica suggests, just do it.

“I like the 10 minute rule. You have to do it for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes if you still don’t feel like it, quit. But most likely you’re going to get 10 minutes in and you’re going to be like, ‘I feel good, I’m going to keep going.'”

“We all have 24 hours in a day and everybody’s got stuff going on,” said Jessica. “But again, you don’t need an hour. It doesn’t have to become a big production. Maybe it’s just 10 minutes here, 10 minutes there. There’s lots of ways to sneak it in.”

Exercise at home

“You can add a few lunges and squats when you’re vacuuming,” said Tristan. “If you can plan it and if you can fit a workout in in the morning, when the kids are still sleeping, just get it done.”

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READ MORE: Easy exercises and stretches you can do at work

Set goals that are action-oriented

Jessica suggests signing up for a fitness class or joining a gym rather than saying, ‘I want to lose 15 pounds.’

“It’s just too ambiguous, there’s no action behind it.”

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“We like to focus on performance versus aesthetics,” Jessica explained. “Set a performance goal. Maybe it’s to be able to do a Spartan Race or a five km (run) or to do a pull-up or something that’s not aesthetic. You’ll likely get aesthetic goals out of it, but it’s not your big focus.”

“Maybe the New Year’s resolution is not about losing weight, it’s about being active,” added Tristan. “And track how much activity you get in the year. The end result might be losing weight, but at least you are more active and healthy.”

Set the right goals for yourself

“People need to track their history,” said Tristan. “I’m pretty sure everybody’s going to set some New Year’s resolutions and it’s not going to be the first time, so they know if they can fail or not.”

On top of that, Tristan says people need to have an intention in mind when setting fitness goals.

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“Those goals have to have a why,” he said. “A very strong, why do you want to achieve it? You’ve got to be invested. If not, it’s just some words up in the air.”